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What approach would you use to ask for a raise? I am asking on behalf of the director of operations at a 10 person office I work at. I admire her tenacity, thoroughness with which she approaches her job. I believe, however, she let herself be turned down for a raise because of low self esteem. She rationalizes some of it saying she and the head guy are friends and she knows his family situation and all the financial standing of the company. However, she complains of receiving wages that are based on a 1985 scale. She would like more money. Look forward to hearing from you.

Thanks for your note to FEMINIST.COM. Unfortunately, asking for a raise is not my strength. The one time I did ask for a raise, I stumbled over the words and kept my head down. That said, I do think your friend is worth the raise--and self-esteem seems to be the key to know it. On average, women continue to earn only $.72 for every dollar earned by a man--and this is in a day and age when many women are the heads of households, etc... I think the most important thing is for her to realize that she is worth it. For some incentive for your friend, you might want to recommend Gloria Steinem's article "Re-Valuing Economics," which can be found in her book Moving Beyond Words (You can find this at the FEMINIST.COM Bookstore under "Feminism").

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